I have said before that the capacity at NG Models for producing new moulds is quite startling and it seems there is no end to their ability to produce top quality castings. Swiftly following, in 1:400, 3 versions of the Tristar, 2 A330s and updates to their existing 737s and 787s they have also out of the blue produced a pair of BizJets in 1:200 scale. Let's take a closer look...
NOTE: Most of the photos in this review can be expanded and viewed in larger size at FlickR by clicking on them.
I must first admit that not only do I not collect 1:200 scale models but I also know relatively little about BizJets either so when I opened these although I could identify the aircraft series I couldn't have told you what versions they represented. Fortunately it isn't hard to find this out and I am confident I have identified them correctly. The subject of this first report is a Gulfstream G550.
Not being familiar with the 1:200 landscape I am far from certain as to the market for these moulds but they are obviously a lot more viable at 200 scale than they are at 400 scale. They are almost unique however as very few business jets have ever been manufactured period, regardless of the scale.
For Gulfstream there have been only four releases ever it seems. Gemini Jets have an active mould for the chunkier Gulfstream G650, which looks like it appeared in 2017 and has seen four releases to date. From what I can see the Gemini mould looks very nice.
The G550 (technically the GV-SP) is the early 2000s variant of the hyper successful General Dynamics Gulfstream Aerospace unit's lineage of business jets. As the certification designation suggests it is derived from the earlier Gulfstream V series. The type has been produced since 2003 and continues in production although the newer G600 series is likely to replace it this year. Over 550 have been built to date and the type is widely used by both private operators and Air Forces.
In military service its uses are diverse. Poland, Sweden, Tanzania, Uganda and the USA use it as a government transport, Kuwait as a Royal transport, Germany as an atmospheric research aircraft, Singapore and Australia for ELINT, and Israel for AEW and special ops. Several of the military variants look very different to the standard private version.
For those unfamiliar with NG Models they represent the highest quality models that have ever been produced in 1:400 scale. They also work actively with the collector community. All their existing moulds are best of breed and so it is no surprise that these new BizJets also look tremendous.
The essential shape of the all the components looks to me to be effectively flawless. The mould shows lovely detailing from the small domes and bumps on the roof and chin to the belly and control surfaces.
The engine fans are beautiful and even looking through the exhaust nozzles there is great fan detail.
Looking at the whole casting I can see only two minor issues. Firstly the aerials are not quite wide enough and look a little too delicate. Secondly on the airframe starboard side there is an outlet underneath the engine (is it an APU?) which is not present on the mould. This could be moulded in since it sticks out a little. See it in the photo below:
An interesting feature of the mould, which is unlike the 1:400 samples I've received, is that in close-up you can faintly see the outline of the cockpit windows, doors and windows:
As i said I don't collect this scale or general aviation aircraft types but regardless it is clear to see this is a very nice mould and adds to the diversity of what is available in 1:200 even if it isn't the classic airliner some probably would have preferred. The Gulfstream series are very attractive aircraft and this mould shows off the G550's line beautifully.
In part 2 I'll have a look at the second new Bizjet from NG Models.
I'm Richard Stretton, an aviation enthusiast and major collector of 400 scale model aircraft. This blog discusses ongoing events in the world of 400 scale.
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